My unbending mind, which is set on college — that’s always a feisty topic, when someone tells me it’ll be too hard or too expensive. Don’t be surprised if I reach across the table and smack you at dinner. Because college is what I live for. My mentality stems from Grandmother.
She is the only known human being whose eye contact is more piercing than my own. She’s strong, 83 years young. She and my grandfather both were born and raised through the Great Depression in none other than the Dust Bowl. In the state of Nebraska, she had dental-hygiene license number one. Yes, the first one. She and Grandfather moved to San Diego in the mid-1950s. They spent many years walking their doberman in Ocean Beach. Now, it has come down to neighborhood walks, where they stop at Einstein Bros off Sixth.
It has been almost two years since my last car accident, and I am such a tightwad I refuse to get the little nick below my headlight repaired. Life of a college student is to blame, and the genetic traits I believe I inherited; 40 percent of our intelligence is probably inherited. To me, money has no value, only when used to pay for college and gas. Four dollars and change per gallon, all day every day.
Two-thousand-twelve seems to be the Year of the Ticket. Moving violations and citations are my new thing.
Whoop-whoop, sang the sirens.
Sometimes, I wonder if they ever feel guilty for pulling over a broke college student whose car is falling apart.
Improper use of the seat belt — nice. Two tickets in 14 days. The first one was for talking on speaker-phone while I was driving.
I really don’t enjoy being nannied. My car continuously has stalling problems and other nonsense I have to find funds for. Let’s just add a ticket or two to my tab.
The 163 area is riddled with bad drivers. People who forget the use of a blinker. That hasn’t changed since 2004, when gas was approximately two dollars and ten cents a gallon.
My father, my dog Coco, and I once left our mark on the center divider in front of Fashion Valley. We were driving back to Bankers Hill from a night of the teenager Nazi regime — gymnastics, that is. Five hours of brutal workouts. For me, it was routine.
Just like the car accidents I found my life stumbling against, routine. I saw the lights from Fashion Valley Mall spin slower and slower as my father’s eyes got larger and larger. As quickly as that Chrysler came, it was gone.
My dog hit the dashboard. Coco was shaking, I was not. Lying back on the doctor’s table, my vision turned to orange. Shards of glass afflicted my retina. My eyeball was intact, my stability was not.
I acknowledge the fact that my young years were far from perfect.
We knew we were in love when he stroked the guitar for me for the first time. He gave me a slight smile out of the side of his mouth. Right then and there, I was as good as gone. He left a week after we marveled about our infatuation. Standing on the Ocean Beach Pier, we saw a seal. The ocean so green, the weather so pure, the love so bold. We were creative and in tune. All along the watchtower, I must wait for his return.
The military sure puts up a stiff fight for successful relationships.
This wonderful grandmother of mine talks to me about how her loving husband’s personality is beginning to change. She asks if I have noticed, and I say, “Of course.” During our frequent dinners, he sits in his chair with nothing more than the scrapes from his silverware against the plate coming from his direction. I cannot help but let my heart break for my grandmother, over the man she loves. His memory is fading, quicker and quicker. We sit and play gin rummy. I find hope and love in his silent presence. I want to soak in his knowledge and remember everything he’s said in the past and cherish it. Love it. Remember it.